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The compassionate hangover

Shame has no place within you anymore.

Emotions have the capacity to inform your being and within them can be found empathy and sweetness. Shame has no sweetness. Shame’s only goal is shame. It is selfish and manipulative by nature and you should hold no space for it anymore. Stop it just as it attempts to enter and look it in the eye. You will win the battle here because you will see that shame holds no power over someone who is brave.

It’s Sunday morning and I woke up vulnerable. I had too much wine last night. It’s my Saturday night struggle. Anything over two glasses makes me feel like I’ve been poisoned. But while I am drinking it with friends or at home, I am telling myself I deserve this. I am still fun. This feels so good. I needed to let go a bit. But almost every time I overindulge, I wake up unrested, emotional. I feel robbed of my vitality and health. And then here it comes, that sneaky shame. I begin to spiral into it. Its lure is so tricky. I make vows and proclamations about how I am weak and I am not going to drink anymore. Then my brain starts a conversation based purely on degrading myself. I know this feeling well and I can’t seem to get out of it.

And then I look over at my meditation rug and I know, because I have learned this about sacred spaces, that I just need to sit. So I go and sit my shaky ass down. I sit and I hear these exact words. Shame has no place within you anymore. The fog that allows its entry becomes clear, just from sitting. It is so simple. The answer comes immediately. The physical vulnerability that comes from a hangover opens to a vulnerability in my spirit. I know this about myself. I am sensitive. I don’t have to qualify it as good or bad. It is just information. That is all. No judgement. It is beautiful. This is sweetness and it is everything. Learning how to give myself this space has been my greatest accomplishment.

Instead of beating myself up all day, I sat for a few moments with tenderness for myself. There is power here. There are so many answers in silence. Sadness may show up and bathe you in tears, anger may come bright and courageous, and once you’ve laid your weapons down, if you are lucky, here comes grace. And she is radical.

After my mother passed away there were times I drank heavily. On purpose. I had unbearable feelings of pain and sadness that I didn’t want to take responsibility for. Drinking would facilitate a release and an outlet for these deep emotions in a way where I could stay separated from them. I thought I was experiencing my grief, but I would never get the payoff of peace afterwards. Instead, I would feel depleted and ashamed. And although I am so much more mindful now and in touch with my emotional world, sometimes I can see that I still need facilitating in order to feel the feel. I look forward to the day when I go through my rite of passage and realize that I have everything within me to sit with my own uneasiness without a few glasses of wine (or the hangover) to help me. But for now, I honor deeply where I am.

I know the ebb and flow. The full moon shines the light. She never fails. Even when she’s covered in thick clouds, the pull towards our emotional body is undeniable. The landscape is stunning here and the gratitude I feel is overwhelming.

Many full moon blessings to you. I hope that the things which no longer serve you fall gently away. And since the full moon rituals embody forgiveness, I will forgive shame as well. Its one redeeming quality is the capacity to light up the compassion for ourselves from within. Be brave!

Happy Sunday!

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